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Equity Group Foundation,Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board commence distribution of second consignment of PPEs

The consignment includes 266,000 respirator masks, 2.7 million 3- ply surgical masks, 50,000 reinforced disposable gowns, 2 million pairs of nitrile gloves, 60,000 pairs of medical scrubs, 50,000 coveralls with shoe covers, 300,000 head covers, 55,000 face shields, 34,000 pairs of goggles and 200,000 disposable aprons.

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Dr.James Mwangi(Chair Health Committee COVID-19 Fund Board) and Phyllis Wakiaga (Procurement Committee Chair) officially handover PPEs to Mathari National Teaching and Referral Hospital Med Sup Dr.Joseph Jumba at a past function.PHOTO/Courtesy.

Equity Group Foundation and the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board have commenced the distribution of the second consignment of locally manufactured personal protective equipment (PPE) to public hospitals across all 47 counties.

All final year medical and dental students from 11 universities with medical and dental schools will also benefit.

This is part of its  sustained efforts to protect medics from the COVID-19 virus.

The consignment includes 266,000 respirator masks, 2.7 million 3- ply surgical masks, 50,000 reinforced disposable gowns, 2 million pairs of nitrile gloves, 60,000 pairs of medical scrubs, 50,000 coveralls with shoe covers, 300,000 head covers, 55,000 face shields, 34,000 pairs of goggles and 200,000 disposable aprons.

The consignment worth Ksh 125M will be  distributed to public hospitals.

While the consignment designated for final year medical and dental students is valued at Kshs 10M, bringing the total value of the consignment to Ksh 135M.

A total of 11 universities whose final year  students were recalled to complete their studies, include – University of Nairobi, Moi University, Kenyatta University, Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology, Maseno University, Masinde Muliro University, Egerton University, Kenya Methodist University, Mount Kenya University and Uzima University will benefit from the PPEs.

They will be issued to the final year medical and dental students based on their needs.

Commenting on the exercise, Dr James Mwangi Equity Group Managing Director and CEO, who is also the Chair of the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board Health Committee noted that both Equity Group Foundation and the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board remain committed to fulfilling their promise of supporting the medical fraternity serving in public hospitals with  PPEs.

This,he said will safeguard health workers serving on the frontline in mitigating the COVID- 19 pandemic.

“With the escalating numbers of COVID-19 cases, it is critical that we protect our healthcare workers who continue to serve with fortitude. This second round of PPEs will equip even more of our healthcare workers. Now that the finalist medical students have resumed classes and clinical rounds, we felt that they too should be protected as they apply themselves in their last practical lap of training alongside their colleagues at the frontlines,” said Dr Mwangi.

Similar to the establishment of the Hospital Liaison Committees, the medical student associations in the various universities have come together to establish working committees led by students who are part of the Equity Leaders Program.

The working Committees will serve the primary purpose of managing and tracking the use of the PPEs as well as share feedback on the quality of the PPEs.

They will also identify the various needs that they may require support to ensure that they remain safe while serving Kenyans.

The Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board Chair, Jane Karuku reiterated the Fund’s commitment to remain at the forefront in strengthening COVID-19 mitigation measures.

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KMTC final year students receive PPEs

The Kenya COVID- 19 Fund Board and Equity Group Foundation continue to support 56 Public Hospitals in all 47 counties together with finalist students in 11 medical and dental training institutions in their efforts to ensure that healthcare workers are safeguarded as they provide frontline care and work round the clock to mitigate the health effects of the pandemic.

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Equity Group CEO Polycarp Igathe(left)and secretary of the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board Principal Administrative Secretary Kennedy Kihara (centre) hand over PPEs to Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC) CEO Prof Michael Kiptoo (right).PHOTO/Courtesy.

8,292 final year medical students studying in various disciplines including nursing, clinical medicine, pharmacy, laboratory medicine, orthopaedic technology, physiotherapy, medical imaging and oral health among others, have today received 500,000 medical grade surgical masks valued at Ksh 2.5 million from Equity Group Foundation and the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board.

The surgical masks are to facilitate the students who are scheduled to sit for final year qualifying examinations this February across 71 KMTC training centres in Kenya.

The donation is part of Equity Group Foundation’s and the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board’s sustained efforts to offer frontline healthcare workers PPEs and psychosocial support.

Speaking during the official handover event, Polycarp Igathe, Equity Group Chief Commercial Officer noted that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve with the world now reporting new variants of the diseases across various regions therefore calling for adaptability and agility in frontline response.

He reiterated Equity Group’s commitment to safeguard healthcare workers serving in the frontline and appreciated their efforts in containing the pandemic within the country.

“It is now almost a year since Kenya reported its first COVID-19 case. Although it may seem that things are normalising, the numbers have been steadily rising and many Kenyans have unfortunately lost their lives including our very own frontline heroes, serving Kenyans in our medical facilities. The market will in the next few weeks receive these medical students for internship and employment opportunities and as EGF and the COVID-19 Fund Board, we saw it fit to support these bright and dedicated students as they complete the final year of their academic journey and perform their noble duties. The surgical masks donated today will go a long in alleviating their mental worry and stress regarding risk of exposure.” said Polycarp.

The Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board and Equity Group Foundation has for the past eight months embarked on an initiative to support frontline health workers in public hospitals with PPEs as well as establish a vibrant psychosocial support and mental wellness programme.

Commenting on this, Principal Administrative Secretary Office of the President Kennedy Kihara who is the Secretary of the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board said, “As a Fund, we have been tasked with the noble mandate to fundraise and effectively utilize the funds that Kenyans are giving us towards cushioning citizens and the country from the adverse effects of COVID-19. We are delighted to partner with Equity in the health response and in boosting the confidence of our healthcare workers by availing PPEs in a timely manner. We urge all the beneficiaries of these PPEs to make effective use of them and to be good stewards of the resources allocated to them.”

While receiving the surgical masks, KMTC CEO, Prof. Micheal Kiptoo, “We are extremely humbled that Equity Group Foundation and the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board thought about our medical students and saw it fit to equip them with protective gear. We need all hands-on deck to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and our students are an important resource who are complementing the service of their senior colleagues in practice. This pandemic continues to affect all Kenyans irrespective of their background and we welcome other corporates to join in this worthy cause.”

KMTC, Clinical Medicine Students Representative Asher Otiende, lauded the efforts of the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board and Equity Group Foundation noting, “Despite taking a long academic break, we are excited to finally enter the final part of our medical course. The surgical masks issued today will help us finish our clinical exams well and will offer the much-needed protection as we execute our duties. We sincerely appreciate Equity Group Foundation and the Kenya COVID-19 Fund Board for thinking about us and for prioritising our safety.”

The Kenya COVID- 19 Fund Board and Equity Group Foundation continue to support 56 Public Hospitals in all 47 counties together with finalist students in 11 medical and dental training institutions in their efforts to ensure that healthcare workers are safeguarded as they provide frontline care and work round the clock to mitigate the health effects of the pandemic.

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KMPDU: No county has met doctors’ demands

This even as KMPDU on Monday launched a nationwide doctors’ strike that will see services paralysed in all the public facilities in the country.

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KMPDU Acting General Secretary Dr.Chibanzi Mwachonda.PHOTO/Courtesy.

A healthcare workers’ union has stated that no county has fully met their demands and that members would stay away from their workstations until their needs were met.

This comes a day after Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui expressed fears that local doctors were planning to join their national colleagues but the county had met their demands.

“I want to make it clear that no single county of the 47 has met the doctors’ demands in full,” stated Acting Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists’ Union General Secretary Chibanzi Mwachonda.

Early today, the union launched a nationwide doctors’ strike that saw services paralysed in all the public facilities. At the Nakuru Level 5 Hospital, services went on smoothly.

Minister for Health Dr Gichuki Kariuki said the county had a binding agreement with KMPDU signed on September 4 stating that local doctors should keep off strikes after meeting most of the demands.

“By September when we signed the agreement, we had met over 70 % of their demands. We don’t expect any doctor to join the national strike,” he stated.

He said that by the end of September, all doctors on the payroll had been provided with enhanced medical cover, effected and backdated common cadre promotions and arrears paid in full.

By September, Dr Gichuki said, 11 doctors had been released for postgraduate studies locally and abroad on merit. The county is in the process of refunding money to 60 self-sponsored doctors.

KMPDU- South Rift branch Secretary-General Davji Atellah said the County had shown willingness to address the doctors’ plight.

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County on mission to ensure COVID-19 protocols compliance in schools

So far, Nakuru County has recorded 3,935 confirmed cases of whom 2,109 patients have recovered.

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Main entrance to Nakuru High school.PHOTO/Courtesy.

The County Government of Nakuru has heightened the inspection of learning institutions to ensure compliance with COVID-19 protocols.

County Minister for Health Dr Kariuki Gichuki says the move is aimed at ensuring schools are safe before full resumption in January 2021.

Dr Gichuki added that sensitization of teachers and students on prevention measures is also ongoing.

According to the Minister, 89 per cent of the schools within Nakuru County have already been covered.

This comes at a time region is recording increased cases of infections and deaths from COVID-19 related complications.

So far, Nakuru County has recorded 3,935 confirmed cases of whom 2,109 patients have recovered.

“Unfortunately, 87 people have succumbed to the disease while 25 people are admitted to various isolation facilities,” he noted.

Among them,15 are at the Nakuru PGH Isolation Centre, 3 in Langalanga, 1 in Valley hospital,1 in Nakuru War Memorial Hospital, 1 in Annex Hospital and 4 in Nakuru Nursing home.

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